To withdraw is not to run away, and to stay is no wise action, when there's more reason to fear than to hope.
There are only two choices: A police state in which all dissent is suppressed or rigidly controlled; or a society where law is responsive to human needs. If society is to be responsive to human needs, a vast restructuring of our laws is essential. Realization of this need means adults must awaken to the urgency of the young peoples unrestin other words there must be created an adult unrest against the inequities and injustices in the present system. If the government is in jeopardy, it is not because we are unable to cope with revolutionary situations. Jeopardy means that either the leaders or the people do not realize they have all the tools required to make the revolution come true. The tools and the opportunity exist. Only the moral imagination is missing.
The truth is that a vast restructuring of our society is needed if remedies are to become available to the average person. Without that restructuring the good will that holds society together will be slowly dissipated. It is that sense of futility which permeates the present series of protests and dissents. Where there is a persistent sense of futility, there is violence; and that is where we are today.
Finding the occasional straw of truth awash in a great ocean of confusion and bamboozle requires intelligence, vigilance, dedication and courage. But if we don't practice these tough habits of thought, we cannot hope to solve the truly serious problems that face us - and we risk becoming a nation of suckers, up for grabs by the next charlatan who comes along.
And what is a good citizen? Simply one who never says, does or thinks anything that is unusual. Schools are maintained in order to bring this uniformity up to the highest possible point. A school is a hopper into which children are heaved while they are still young and tender; therein they are pressed into certain standard shapes and covered from head to heels with official rubber-stamps.
We begin life with the world presenting itself to us as it is. Someone - our parents, teachers, analysts - hypnotizes us to see the world and construe it in the right way. These others label the world, attach names and give voices to the beings and events in it, so that thereafter, we cannot read the world in any other language or hear it saying other things to us. The task is to break the hypnotic spell, so that we become undeaf, unblind and multilingual, thereby letting the world speak to us in new voices and write all its possible meanings in the new book of our existence. Be careful in your choice of hypnotists.
The good, say the mystics of spirit, is God, a being whose only definition is that he is beyond man's power to conceive - a definition that invalidates man's consciousness and nullifies his concepts of existence. The good, say the mystics of muscle, is Society - a thing which they define as an organism that possesses no physical form, a super-being embodied in no one in particular and everyone in general except yourself.... The purpose of man's life, say both, is to become an abject zombie who serves a purpose he does not know, for reasons he is not to question.
My uncle ordered popoversfrom the restaurant's bill of fare.And, when they were served,he regarded them with a penetrating stare.Then he spoke great words of wisdomas he sat there on that chair:To eat these things, said my uncle,You must exercise great care.You may swallow down what's solid,but you must spit out the air!And as you partake of the world's bill of fare,that's darned good advice to follow.Do a lot of spitting out the hot air.And be careful what you swallow.
What makes you think that human beings are sentient and aware? There's no evidence for it. Human beings never think for themselves, they find it too uncomfortable. For the most part, members of our species simply repeat what they are told - and become upset if they are exposed to any different view. The characteristic human trait is not awareness but conformity, and the characteristic result is religious warfare. Other animals fight for territory or food; but, uniquely in the animal kingdom, human beings fight for their beliefs. The reason is that beliefs guide behavior, which has evolutionary importance among human beings. But at a time when our behavior may well lead us to extinction, I see no reason to assume we have any awareness at all. We are stubborn, self-destructive conformists. Any other view of our species is a self-congratulatory delusion.
I am here because there is no refuge,Finally, from myself,Until I confront myself in the eyesAnd hearts of others, I am running.Until I suffer them to share my secrets,I have no safety from them.Afraid to be known, I can know neither myselfNor any others; I will be alone.Where else but on this common ground,Can I find such a mirror?Here, together, I can at last appearClearly to myself,Not as the giant of my dreams,Not the dwarf of my fears,But as a person, part of a whole,With my share in its purpose.In this ground, I can take root and grow.Not alone anymore, as in death,But alive, to my self and to others.
When the first baby laughed for the first time, the laugh broke into a thousand pieces and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies. And now when every new baby is born its first laugh becomes a fairy. So there ought to be one fairy for every boy or girl.